Ulrike Umlauf-Orrom Sophisticated Metamorphoses

Ulrike Umlauf-Orrom's forms are of great clarity and strength. They combine the obvious love of the material glass with the designer's passion for targeted planning and perfection. Objects are created on the fine line between still functional and freely developing art.


Since her studies in London, where she came into intensive contact with Japanese applied art, she has been deeply inspired by the complexity of Japanese textiles. In her fusing works, she achieves glass of an almost fabric-like quality by means of  parallel or intersecting colour lines that are optically interwoven. Expressive variations are objects in which the glass surface is opened up and enlivened by grid structures. In another work cycle, the padded objects, additional air pockets are melted in during the fusing process – inspired by the reinforcing platelets of samurai armour. This gives the visual three-dimensionality of the surface its haptic quality.

After an apprenticeship in ceramics and a Degree in Industrial Design in Munich, Ulrike Umlauf-Orrom discovered, during her Master's studies at the Royal College of Art in London, glass as a medium to which she has devoted herself ever since. Even after almost forty years, she still considers it the most fascinating of all materials. Again and again she tries – using a variety of techniques – to make its wonderful immanent qualities visible, impressed by the metamorphosis the glass undergoes in her hands.

Her pieces are part of international exhibitions and numerous public and private collections. For her work she received renowned awards and prizes, such as the Bavarian State Prize 2001 or the GEDOK FormART Prize 2005. A special honour and recognition of her "Japanese" aesthetics is for her the meanwhile 5th invitation to the International Kanazawa Glass Prize in Japan, which is awarded every three years.